With certified clowns pocket Bobby Valentine comically still at the helm, former Boston Red Sox skipper Terry Francona will be an alluring managerial candidate

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Francona has long surrounded himself with greatness.

Current ESPN baseball analyst and former Boston Red Sox skipper Terry Francona will be an alluring candidate to manage the Detroit Tigers, Cleveland Indians and virtually any other club that has an opening once the 2012 season concludes.

The 53-year-old Francona, who was axed after overseeing one of the worst collapses in MLB history when Boston went 7-20 in September 2011 and squandered a nine-game lead over the Tampa Bay Rays to miss the playoffs, is arguably the most successful manager in Red Sox history.

Francona, who instructed Michael Jordan in 1994 as a manager of the AA franchise Birmingham Barons, and guided the Sox to championships in the 2004 and 2007 seasons, is a gregarious and likable man.

Sadly, and more than somewhat pathetically, Francona was railroaded in Beantown last autumn when anonymous cowards told local newspapers that his struggling marriage and fondness for pain pills spearheaded the notorious demise on Yawkey Way.

Undoubtedly, “Theo and the Trio,” had something to do with the disgusting campaign designed to smear Francona’s name.

After Epstein bolted for Chicago to run the rudderless Cubs organization, John Henry, Tom Werner and Larry Lucchino ingeniously inked certified clown pocket Bobby Valentine to lead their franchise.

Unfailingly, Valentine has chapped New Englanders asses and made Sox fans yearn for the utopian days of “Tito.”

Francona will root for the reemergence of polio before returning to “The Hub.”

Nevertheless, a solid guy like Terry Francona deserves to be given the reigns to another team and restore his wrongly sullied name.

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